After years of denying any major issues, Takata, a Japanese airbag manufacturer, has admitted to selling millions of defective airbags to auto manufacturers. The admission comes after the company was fined almost $1 million by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration for not cooperating with the agency.
The admission last week included more vehicle recalls. The total number of recalled vehicles has reached 34 millions, but that number is expected to rise even higher in the next few weeks. The recalls started several years ago, and have increased several times since then.
At least six deaths and 100 injuries have been connected to Takata airbags. The airbags can explode at higher rates than intended, causing injuries to the face and torso. At least two victims sustained eye injuries, one was blinded, when the airbag sent shrapnel into their bodies. One death was caused by shrapnel piercing the victim’s neck.
The issue is with the propellant used to inflate the airbags, which can easily malfunction. Former employees have claimed that the company knew about the defects as early as ten years ago but ignored warnings by engineers.
You can find out if your vehicle is on the recall list via the NHTSA website.
Source: New York Times